Update [Thu 17th Mar, 2022 14:30 GMT]: Following on from Tuesday's Tweets, Square Enix has now put out an official statement in English on the state of the game.
Here's what producer Hironori Okayama has to say about player's issues that have been highlighted in recent days:
To all our players,
I am very sorry that bugs in the competitive modes of the game, and our lack of advance communication, have caused inconvenience to players.
The development team has come together and been working to fix all the bugs as soon as possible.
We have also heard many opinions about how additional DLC is implemented. We are considering this feedback seriously and putting all our efforts into making sure that we provide future updates that satisfy all fans who have purchased the game.
The first thing we have done is changed the Prize Level system for Chocobo GP mode to make it easier to increase your level.
We have also eased up on the overall requirements and have now made it easier to reach level 100, in particular. We hope players will take advantage of this to earn Cloud or some new vehicles.
We have also set our new design policy to readjust the metagame, so that it is easier for players to earn new characters once they have purchased the retail version of the game.
Taking this thinking further, we will now have cosmetic items, such as costumes that don’t affect gameplay, as the high-level Prize Pass rewards, or as items on sale in the Mythril Shop.
We are open to implementing additional changes to the game, and will continue to take all feedback into account and polish the game even further going forward.
We are also considering removing some of the restrictions on the Lite version to make it easier for streamers to hold events, so watch out for further news on that.
The statement also addresses a number of issues that Square Enix is looking to fix as soon as possible. The ones it specifically points out are:
a. Errors when purchasing items that arise from differences in the application version. (Players with this issue will be contacted individually)
b. An issue when matchmaking that results in some players being unable to enter the ready state and proceed into a race.
c. A bug where the race start timing is not in sync.
d. Issues where races do not end in the correct way, such as the results screen coming up before completing the set number of laps etc.
It also says that score bands will be eased for any future levels achieved by the player going forward, which should help the grind. The company is looking to get a patch in place to fix these issues as soon as possible.
Square Enix has also outlined what to expect from future seasons. Currently, Chocobo GP is on Season 1, so any new characters, tracks, costumes and Mythril rewards will be detailed closer to the start of the next season.
We'll have to wait and see if this fixes all of the game's issues when the patch goes live, and we'll keep you up to date on when that happens, as well as when we know details on the next season.
Original story [Tue 15th Mar, 2022 01:55 GMT]: The cute Final Fantasy-themed racer Chocobo GP arrived on the Nintendo Switch last week, and while it's got some solid kart racing mechanics, fans have voiced their concerns about the game's prize pass, which acts as a season pass.
It's not your traditional kart racer in that sense, where you can unlock everything with relative ease. It's now got to the point where the team has issued a lengthy message to Japanese players - explaining what to expect from Chocobo GP moving forward, along with some of the actions that have already been taken.
The game's producer, Hironori Okayama, also mentioned how the team is taking player feedback on board:
"We have also received many comments on how to provide additional DLC. We take this seriously and will continue to do our best to provide updates that will satisfy everyone who purchases."
Reddit user Sat-AM shared a rough Google translation of this latest update on the Nintendo Switch subreddit. Here's the full breakdown:
1. They're aware of and working on fixing the online issues.
2. They sent out 500 Mythril and lowered EXP requirements on the pass as an apology to players, meaning the lowered EXP requirement may not be how they do future passes. If you had enough EXP to be at a higher level, you were automatically leveled up.
3. Major updates and changes will come with season changes, so there will likely be no future adjustments for season 1.
4. Future seasons will include 2 new characters (1 on the pass and 1 for gil).
5. "Items added to the Gil Shop will be added each time the season is repeated," sounds like they'll be keeping Gil-bought characters in the Gil Shop for future seasons, but it could also mean that they are planning to repeat seasons eventually.
6. Characters on the pass may be available to be purchased "directly" with mythril or gil after the pass has been run.
7. New courses will be released for players on both the full and lite versions in Season 2.
8. More mythril shop items (costumes and BGM tracks) are coming mid-season.
9. Currently, Mythril can only be obtained via login reward, but starting in Season 2, it will also be a pass reward.
10. Balance changes are coming in Season 2, including changes to characters and base mechanics. They're not touching anything before then unless it's broken enough to need an immediate fix, though.
11. they are taking player feedback about DLC/microtransactions into account when planning for future updates.
12. They seem to primarily be concerned with the average player being able to get to level 100 (out of 200) over the course of a 2-month pass.
13. Current EXP gain is balanced so that players with a 1:1 win/lose ratio in GP mode will receive roughly 1 level per GP mode run with the stickers provided by the pass. The line after this ("In this way, our new basic policy is to create an environment in which it is easy to obtain additional characters simply by purchasing the product version") implies that they essentially find this suitable, and may be keeping the current EXP gain rates for the pass.
14. More cosmetic/BGM sorts of things will be coming to the Mythril shop and the pass as high-level rewards.
15. Changes being made to the Lite version are "to make it easier for video distributors to hold events," so this might be indicating that they may be allowing Lite players to access the host's roster, as "events" is probably in reference to tournaments. It may also, however, be in reference to allowing non-GP online play, or something else entirely.
We'll be sure to let you know if Square Enix eventually shares more information in English. You can find out more about the game's season pass problems in our previous story:
What are your own thoughts about Chocobo GP so far? Are you hopeful the experience will improve in the future? Leave a comment down below.
[source twitter.com, via reddit.com, mynintendonews.com]
They really screwed up with this one. Shame, I wanted it but this season pass stuff and the surrounding components in a full price game. Unfortunate...
Good they are trying to make improvements, but personally the game just doesn't feel super great to me control-wise and the extra cost for the season pass raises the bar in my opinion-- if the game were amazing the various costs might be worth it, but it's not. Plus I'm still sad it doesn't have Sephiroth. I'll stick with Mario Kart 8.
Q : What are your own thoughts about Chocobo GP so far ?
Me : The game has been ruined by micro transactions practice, no matter how many attempts from SquareEnix to convince us about this game. It was too late to say sorry.
I read this and my initial response is that if they were so immediately going to make changes to monetization, why did they even bother launching the game as is? But it almost feels like this is a deliberate attempt to make the monetization so bad at launch that less awful version of that seems "good" by comparison.
Either way its dumb and has guaranteed it is largely forgotten once the Mario Kart DLC is out.
This game deserves to flop for using a free-to-play model in a full retail game (hopefully the Mario Kart DLC steals a lot of its thunder) but sadly it'll probably still make them some decent money and give them more bad ideas for the future.
It occurs to me that the lite version exists to ensure that enough players are available for the 64-participant GP Mode, on top of just being a demo version.
That by itself was one of the few smart business decisions with the game, but the heavy monetisation and predatory sales tactics on a full-price game isn't okay.
Meh this game is already DOA on a system with the best Mario Kart about to get new tracks.
crash team racing all over again
Is it just me or SE is focusing a lot on games as a service titles lately and they are all flopping or releasing uncooked?
Sorry SE this ship has sail
@kkslider5552000 all these publishers figure younger players are accustomed to seeing this crap. And to the vocal online crowd they’re happy to give them what they want: validating apologies
They brought all of this onto themselves. Don't release money-hungry business models in a retail-priced game next time. The sad part is that a lot of people say that it's actually fun to play, but ultimately, no one is gonna wanna play something with such an awful set of monetary mechanics surrounding it.
Should've been good at launch. No one will be playing when the game is suddenly good in 4-5 years--assuming it even survives for that long.
I'm not interested in playing a whole lot, once I grind enough to get squall I'm probably hopping out till the next season, if they need players to contuine playing all season long there should be a ranking of some sorts, heck I don't feel like it matters if I get last place since I mostly get coins from quests.
Get rid of the microtransactions altogether and I'll once again consider purchasing this game. No sooner. Of course they're not going to do that because they're greedy sons of you-know-whatches so this game probably isn't ever gonna be in my possession.
@JR150 They’ll have had discussions about freemium and one-time purchase models. Somewhere in their analysis they decided to not pick a lane and saddlebag the game with both ways to charge. I’m sure they had these responses at the ready, doubtless
Still waiting for Walmart to stock the game yet tbh. :/
Babylon's Fall terrible PS2 style visuals, gameplay, customization, and in-game micro transaction, Chocobo GP season pass and micro transactions, Kingdom Hearts: Cloud Collection, Balan Wonderworld trash gameplay, embracing NFTs, The Avengers awful live service, Guardians of the Galaxy failure and cloud edition on Switch, Dragon Quest X still doesn't exist in the west, Switch ports of Dragon Quest Heroes I & II still not releasing in the west, not releasing FFXV natively for Switch (instead they port the garbage pocket version), no Final Fantasy Pixel Remastered Collection for consoles, the disappointing Taito Milestone collection, still no physical release for The Last Remnant, Star Ocean: First Departure R, and Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamer Edition, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered awful multiplayer offering, merging Steam account with Square Enix account on PC for FFXIV, supporting mobile more than consoles, etc., Square Enix had been on a roll of major disappointments as of late.
bad start almost always means bad ending. unless their dev is as good as no mans sky. but that also need years , by then this game will already dead.
is this the new EA/Ubisoft? the price for unlock everything maybe cost more than the game itself
It is good this game is failing and it is enjoyable to watch Square Enix suffer for their bad decisions regarding this project.
Hmmm... what do to when making a charming cutey game starring a chocobo on roller skates...
I know! Charge $40 and then include lots of gatcha mobile popups when you first turn on the game! And tell them they need to spend more in order to change the god awful menu music!
They need to remove the Microtransactions and Seasons completely. Just add new courses and characters as DLC which I would be prepared to pay for if I feel they were worthwhile. Yes they really screwed things over with this one. It's almost as if they implemented the Microtransactions and were hoping people wouldn't say anything.
@PBandSmelly Didn't mind the Menu Music personally. I know I'm in the minority but I actually found it really cute 😅
Call me old-fashioned, but I miss the days when games were complete upon release. No updates. No DLC. And certainly none of this jumbo-transaction BS either.
"battle passes" are trash in all respects. I absolutely hate them. Even on F2P games I despise them. They force you to play a game over a set period of time with a time limit constantly hovering over your head and the kicker is that unlike just buying a skin as a microtransaction, you need to pay for privilege to grind out the premium pass. Utter garbage. We see how egregious they can get with this game but when they add them to games that people enjoy, they'll get another free pass. Yet another way consumers get nickle and dimed to death.
Oh, they want to apologize? Good. Start by making the game either free to play or complete in box. One or the other. Until you do, it's Mario Kart all the way.
I tried the lite version for ten minutes and that was enough for me. Saved me some money. Still a shame given that I'm always up for a good kart racer than isn't Mario Kart. This just ain't it.
Square has long been flirting with the question, "Will fans pay full price for a game with a mobile game pay scheme?" With Chocobo GP they went all-in and found out the answer was "No!"
Just wish they'd picked a different franchise to mess with. I like the Chocobo racers.
I grow tired of companies listing huge patch notes in order to show us how hard they are workingto get it right for us. I know they like to say they are listening but they were tone deaf in the first instance releasing it.
From what games that I have played and seen the only game that has done the season pass model correctly is "The Master Chief Collection". Every time you rank up you earn a token.
Then you can use that token on any of the season pass that have been released. Each season pass has a tier which contain 10 items and you can pick any item you want in that tier but you can only progress to the next tier until you got all the items in that tier.
Sure it isn't perfect but you gain experience by doing anything in the game either story or multiplayer and there are new challenges each week for both.
To me this is how you do a battle pass in a fully priced game. Oh and the battles passes are free in the game.
@somebread not at all. While I agree you have to play really too much to get everything (especially in that awful online experience), you don't really need to spend money, it's just a way to buy everything faster. But in this game there are a lot of items (being colours, characters, musics and so on) that no matter how much you play, you just have to pay to have it. And CTR had even more content at launch (and was 40€ opposed to Chocobo's 50€)
Since when did games have to have "seasons"?
Ruined by greed!
The game is very fun to actually play, it has that chaos and challenging level design that's just totally missing from the new Mario Kart.
Yet all the bad decisions stink it up so bad, it really is such a shame.
I'll keep waiting for it to go full f2p like Knockout City. Most likely within a year would be my guess if they want to keep any sort of user base, especially with MK DLC around the corner.
@Folderoll Just trying to piggyback on Fortnite success with seasons. There at least it's done brilliantly and allows the game to feel fresh every couple of months. In this case it's just about $$$.
I was excited for this after Nintendolife’s review.
I cannot believe this scored above a 5. It’s a miserable experience. Even if there’s an ok racer in there somewhere I could not be bothered to find it. Utterly horrible.
It's a step in the right direction, but still not enough. I'm waiting for the complete removal of monetisation, and the release of all of the content they have held back to place behind a paywall.
There really isn't any excuse for their approach... They literally have Mario Kart 8 Deluxe consistently sat at the top of the Switch charts as a blue print for success.
I mean, 'fair changes' I guess.
Those already playing the game will like them while those that gave up on the game will not come back anyway so no point in trying to address them.
Though personally I would need to see them at the very least redo from the ground up the whole monetization system before I reconsider this game. It's not just slightly unbalanced, but a complete money grabbing mess at its very core imo.
But once this kind of games launch they rarely, if ever, can even effort to do such drastic changes. A shame really...
This game is good other than the microtransaction stuff
Ugh this why I became tired of crash team racing. Having to grind it out to unlock stuff kills any fun.
@RupeeClock I think that has become standard practice now hasn't it? Playing the "look, we listened" card to try and get players to accept slightly less bad monetisation.
It is a fun racer but a big problem is that these characters are not cosmetic - they have their own attacks and stats like speed and handling. Squall can be unlocked with earned in-game currency Gil, but getting Cloud requires you to pay for the battlepass and grind out the levels, otherwise you can get battlepass extra for a lot more cash and skip that. Also, any bgm tracks don’t seem to change the music. You still get the same annoying and cheesy vocal jpop song on an endless loop.
Sadly yes, but people are getting wise to these "we listened" tactics.
Specifically, that they intentionally high-ball the costs, await the backlash, and then dial the costs back. It's intentional from the start and really scummy.
I know a way to help Square fix their games
Get rid of the muppet in charge who thinks, mobile and live service games are what the players want and get in someone who understands their audience
@TheStardustWarrior lets not forget that they are releasing FFIX in store but as a download code in a box instead of on a cart even though they already released it on a cart in other regions
Like i said in my previous post, the guy in charge of Square right now is a muppet and he needs to go before he kills the company
why are there three different confusing currencies? A game needs a single one, fully unlocked by playing the game normally and without outside money involved.
@FullbringIchigo the muppet has launched three failed games as a service now (Avengers, Outriders, Babylon) so maybe they've lost enough money to actually start adjusting their greedy approach to games
I'd say don't bother. You already screwed up and made it a 50€ mobile game. Your PR for this game is never going to recover from that.
I remember thinking DAY ONE when it was announced. Then I heard about a season pass... and all this grinding... no thanks! I'll wait for the "complete" release in a few years.
So when's Chocobo GP Deluxe releasing? You know, the version with all the season pass content included at no extra cost?
This kind of crap is why I stopped supporting Hot Wheels Unleashed and Crash Team Racing. HW with just one season pass has cost me nearly $80+ and they have season 2 for $29.99 plus a 3rd on the way..... $60 base game + $90 DLC NOPE. CTR buying game currency to add characters and carts, NOPE. Chocobo GP is falling right into step with these games. Square Enix should pull the game and put a halt to anything until they get this fixed. The once praised Mario Kart killer has come in DOA. Its own resuscitation is largely dependent on whether or not Square Enix actually cares what the possible fan base is telling them. Yes they seem to be listening (if only slightly), but there is so much that needs fixed that this game needs shut down and relaunched at a later date. As for me I only tried the Lite version, because I was unsure of the game, have deleted the game. Maybe if the proper changes are made i will redownload the game. But I doubt that will happen. RIP Chocobo
@Browny That will only cost players $200 Lol
Even if that were so, it's gotta hit the bargain bin some day, right?
They are seeing what they can get away with. In a few months they will change it again to make it worse. They have lost my trust.
I think the game is great with some obvious and not-so-obvious caveats. Having a free edition with mostly gutted content alongside a full-priced version with everything available along with a season pass model(the first of which is essentially free) is fine, and I'm not entirely sure why folks are up in arms about that. The other alternative is... having a free version riddled with microtransactions to get all the content and a season pass model, so... Same thing?
I think I wanted more tracks available at launch. Maybe 2 more, and the audio needs a bit of work. As it is, similar to Xenoblade Chronicles 2, the audio levels blend in too much at max values, so without properly setting things yourself, which is tricky to figure out JUST the right levels, music overpowers the voices and sound effects, which really do have an impact on immersion. You really want to hear the engines reving, item activations, and character voices.
I'm glad to see them adding more tracks and fixing issues though. I hope they add more staple characters like Lightning, but also deep cuts like Moobmas from FFVIII. A track themed around Balamb Garden or Eden might be cool.
It really sucks that this whole thing happened. I really enjoyed of what I played in the Lite version and want to get the main game, but this form of microtransactions is just super scummy. I really hope this whole thing gets changed so that more people actually try it out since it is very fun. Maybe just focus on the main game stuff if your interested in the game
@FullbringIchigo don't forget the NFT New Year's letter.
@Browny Nah it only hits the bargain bin if they can't push physical copies. It also depends on how many people end up buying the game digitally as well. I'd say just stick to all of the main game unlockables if you get the game, unless you're easily susceptible to stuff like this, then I'd say avoid it unless you're playing offline
Fortunately, I'm not susceptible to microtransactions. But I do refuse to give Square a sale on the base game as it is now. Should a "Deluxe" version release in the future, it might warrant a purchase at full retail, or I could simply wait for a Black Friday sale and get it for half off.
Shame, really. I wanted to get this when it was first announced, but not the way it is now. I chose to buy Mario Kart 8 instead given the additional content coming to that game.
@CaptainCluck I think it's mainly for the race tracks in the game and not the menu music
@Browny Yeah that's fair. It will probably go on sale at some point soon (all AAA games do) and then would be a good time to pick it up, because I highly doubt they'll make a complete edition of the game because CTR used the same system of microtransactions and content delivery and they haven't launched a complete edition (although I wish they would for preservation for the future sake)
To be fair, I don't expect a complete or deluxe version in the next year or two, but three or four years down the line, probably on the tail end of the current generation or early in the next. And by that point, what's old is new again.
@Browny True, but considering a lot of games these days never end up getting physical complete editions (except for maybe a few exceptions) so I'm not gonna hold my breath for it, with all of the current microtransactions already, I doubt they would want to give out for a base price, even after a while
Square/enix have always been shmucks and i'm glad more people are starting to notice.
@Malakhim24 Finally, an actually reasonable and well thought out response that doesn't boil down to "micro transactions bad". I agree with everything you mentioned here. There are actual legitimate complaints to have beyond that. On top of the music volume and the lack of tracks you mentioned, I would also like to mention that hit boxes are a bit weird as well and may need to be altered in the future. Sometimes I've felt like I've been far enough away from a track hazard to avoid it, but I've just barely nicked its overly large hit box instead. All in all, it's an incredibly fun game and I'm looking forward to what content they plan on releasing next.
Aaand Square Enix just danced around the core complaints that the game is flooded with scummy microtransaction exploitation despite being a full retail release. Why wouldn't they?
The impressive thing is that Chocobo Racing isn't even the worst GaaS game that Square Enix launched this month.
Something about Steiner in a go cart just feels right
Nope, the microtransactions ruined my initial thoughts of this game, no tweaking can change that first impression i got of it
The microtransactions have not helped this game at all.
However, I have put in a good 5 hours so far and enjoyed my time with it. I am continuing to play each evening and look forward to the new courses, only 9 courses currently even with different routes is not enough. Another 3 or 4 courses with multiple routes/weather conditions would add great value, and also lowering the grind would finally make it a great game.
it's a 7/10 from me so far, I'm enjoying it's weird charm despite it's failings.
It's fun but completely ruined by money grabbing
It was still too late to say sorry.
Milky milky very very milky.
Take out the microtransactions altogether ya leeches.
I tried playing the lite version but it wants you to be connected to the internet every 2 minutes. Apart from the aggressive methods of dlc that really is another major offput.
This game is such a mess lol
Ahh yes apologize for things that aren't even the main problem. Really dropped the ball on this one. I'm still betting it goes full f2p before the end of the year and make profits from skins/characters. Either that or it will just die off.
Amazing that they pull this garbage right before Nintendo offer double the tracks of base MK8D for £17. Can say what you want about the apparent effort that’s gone into the tracks themselves but for less than half the price of a new game for a full Mario Kart’s worth of track content it’s hard to complain much, especially when it’s most recent competitor is pulling this kind of rubbish.
Not gonna lie, this actually made me chuckle :3
Not only is it more storefront than game, apparently it's also completely broken!
That's two live service abominations that tanked in a short while for SE.
I sincerely hope that this mess gets as expensive as possible for them ^^
Call me old fashion but what are these guys talking about? Original mario kart had like 8 characters and I played it endlessly. I honestly don't even understand half the jargon they're mentioning. Less is more for me, and wont be getting this anytime soon
hey i have an idea. let players unlock characters by beating in-game challenges. you know, like a videogame.
Unpopular opinion: I like this game.
“I like this game”
It’s not about the game it’s about the mechanics. It’s about the messages it sends and it’s about the future. Put your udders away and don’t let yourself be brazenly milked
These companies don't seem to have a clue how much damage they do to their brands by pulling this kind of nonsense.
I think the insane grinding needed to advance shows just how little respect Square higher-ups have for consumers.
It's funny how Square is forcing out so many live-services when they already have a successful one (FF14)
@GrailUK They really just try to get away with stuff like this to see if they can. To see how low consumers will allow them to go.
@Crono1973 The sad part is, it keeps some people engaged with their product happy to tolerate low effort releases.
"We have also heard many opinions about how additional DLC is implemented. We are considering this feedback seriously and putting all our efforts into making sure that we provide future updates that satisfy all fans who have purchased the game."
Utter nonsense and a bare faced lie, they know exactly what they're doing and Square have been on this slope for a while
They really should have just made it free to play
Sounds like its time for some change in management.
I picked up the Lite version for a go, but forgot that I let my NSO expire so cant play it anyway... aside from the horrible tutorial bit. The game does look fun though, despite the valid complaints of this article...
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